The Italian VISA System

learn the types available of italian visa to enter italy
Find your Italian Visa among the options available: for short or long term stays, to study, carry out business activities and more.

The Italian Visa is an endorsement on the passport that allows foreigners to enter the Country. In this case, the Visa is required for non-EU nationals willing to enter Italy for multiple reasons. Here is a breakdown of the Italian Visa types.

Table of contents

  1. What is a Visa?
  2. What is the normative framework for Italian Visas?
  3. Visa-free Countries and the Schengen Area
  4. Italian Visa Types
  5. Italian Visa denial
  6. Book a call
  7. Ask our Experts

 

1. What is a Visa?

A Visa is an authorization provided to a foreigner to enter a foreign destination Country. As such, the Authorities issue Visas for both transit and stay. Furthermore, Visas have expiration dates, and they are not renewable.

In order to obtain a Visa to enter Italy, travellers must apply at the Italian Consular offices spread across the globe. Furthermore, it is important to remember that, once issued, a Visa can be revoked by the Authorities.

2. What is the normative framework for Italian Visas?

We can divide Italian Visas roughly into 2 visa types: short term visas or long-term visas. Short-term visas are applicable for stays of no more than 3 months within a six-months period. On the other hand, long-term visas are applicable for stays of more than 90 days.

Short term visas are regulated by EU Regulation 810/2009, adopted in Italy with Ministerial Decree of May 11th, 2011. The abovementioned Regulation describes the procedures and the conditions that each Country must abide by. It is, therefore, a set of shared rules among EU Countries.

Legislative Decree 286/1998, also known as Unique Text on Immigration (Testo Unico Sull’Immigrazione), regulates long-term Italian visa types.

Because of this different normative source, Visas are generally categorised in Uniform Schengen Visa (USV) or National Visas (NV)

3. Visa Free Countries and the Schengen Area

Not all foreigners wishing to travel to Italy need a Visa. Visa free travellers can be divided in 2 groups: the Schengen Area travellers and the Visa Free Countries.

3.1 Schengen Area Countries

The Acquis Schengen, a convention implementing the Schengen Agreement of June 14, 1985, created a free movement area in Europe.

More specifically, the Agreement was signed by the Governments of the States of the Benelux Economic Union, the Federal Republic of Germany and the French Republic. In particular, the goal was to approve the gradual abolition of their common borders.

Therefore, thanks to the Acquis Schengen, it is possible for EU citizens to move from an EU country to the other without Visas.

3.2 Visa Free Countries

On the other hand, nationals of the following Countries do not need any visa types under certain conditions:

Albania, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Bahamas, Barbados, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Colombia, South Korea, Costa Rica, Dominica, El Salvador, United Arab Emirates, Georgia, Japan, Grenada, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong SAR, Solomon Islands, Israel, Kiribati, Vincent and the Grenadines, Taiwan, East Timor, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Ukraine, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Venezuela.

Conditions for the above Countries apply exclusively to stays of up to 90 days within a 180-day period, for:

  • tourism;
  • mission;
  • business;
  • invitation;
  • religious reasons;
  • transit;
  • transport;
  • sports competition and study.

 

Also, some Countries need to meet some specific conditions:

  • Taiwan: the visa waiver only applies to holders of passports that include an identity card number;
  • Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Ukraine: the visa waiver applies only to holders of biometric passports;
  • Serbian citizens holding passports issued by the Serbian Coordination Directorate (Koordinaciona uprava) are excluded from the visa waiver.

 

Nationals of San Marino and the Holy See are always exempt from the visa requirement.

4. Italian Visa Types

4.1. Short-term stay (Uniform Schengen Visa – USV)

The short-term stay visa is valid for stays of up to 90 days and includes the following categories:

  • Business – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy to perform business activities (meetings, negotiations, training sessions);
  • Tourist – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy for purposes of tourism and leisure;
  • Study – released to foreign nationals who intend to study in Italy among recognised educational establishments
  • Medical Care – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy to undertake medical treatments in a public or private clinic;
  • Mission – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy for reasons connected to their public role;
  • Religious Reasons – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy for participating to pilgrimages or for worship reasons;
  • Sports Competitions – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy to participate in sport competitions.

 

4.2. Long-term stay (National Visa)

Conversely, long-term stay Visa types are valid for stays of more than 90 days, including the following categories:

  • Work – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy on the basis of a work contract with an Italian company;
  • Intra Company transfer – for intra company transfers of highly specialized workers/executives or trainees;
  • Blue Card – for the local hiring of highly specialized workers or executives;
  • Family Reasons – released to foreign nationals who require to join a close relative living in Italy on the long term. This type further includes the following:
    • On the one hand, Visa for family members, accompanying a foreigner who has already obtained a “D” visa to Italy;
    • On the other hand, Visa for family members of a foreigner already living in Italy.
  • Elective Residence – released to foreign nationals who intend to move their residence to Italy;
  • Investor visa – released to foreign nationals who intend to invest in a business in Italy;
  • Italy Startup Visa – addressed to foreign entrepreneurs who wish to open an innovative startup in Italy, strongly tied with innovation and technology;
  • Internship Visa – released to foreign nationals moving to Italy on the basis of a training project in a company;
  • Mission – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy for reasons connected to their public role;
  • Religious Reasons – released to foreign nationals coming to Italy for participating to pilgrimages or for worship reasons;
  • Re-Entry Visa – released to foreign nationals who were been holding a residence permit for Italy, but lost it for whatsoever reasons, and require to return to the country.
  • Adoption – released to foreign nationals who have been adopted in Italy.

 

5. Italian Visa Denial

Once a foreigner applies for an Italian Visa, the Authorities may deny the issuing of such document.
In that case, the Authorities must give a reason for the denial. In fact, the Consulates communicate to the interested party in a language that he/she understands or, failing that, in English, French, Spanish or Arabic the explanation of the denial.

The foreigner may, then, appeal against such decision at the Regional Administrative Court (T.A.R.) of Lazio within 60 days of notification of the decision.

Only in the case of visa refusals for family reunification or accompanying family members, applicants may file complaints with the competent ordinary court without time limit.

 


 

6. Regulatory Framework

  • Acquis Schengen
  • Decree Law 286, 1998
  • EU Regulation 810/2009
  • Ministerial Decree of May 11th, 2011

How We can help you

Studio A&P provides full support to apply for an Italian Visa. We can carry out the entire process online.

Quick and easy steps on how to get an Italian Visa:

  1. Contact us before you arrive in Italy;
  2. We will analyze your specific case;
  3. You will receive ad-hoc advisory on fulfillments, timing and costs of the procedure;
  4. You will receive full support in the preparation and submission of all the relevant documents;
  5. We will inform you on the mandatory fulfillments to be completed upon your arrival to Italy.

Don’t know where to start? Have a look here at our full list of Italian Visas to find the one that best suits you.

Fill in the form below to get a quotation from our Experts or directly book a call to receive a dedicated consulting session with A&P.

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